|Publication number||US7114564 B2|
|Application number||US 10/435,320|
|Publication date||Oct 3, 2006|
|Filing date||May 9, 2003|
|Priority date||Apr 27, 2001|
|Also published as||US8439114, US20030188867, US20080264639|
|Publication number||10435320, 435320, US 7114564 B2, US 7114564B2, US-B2-7114564, US7114564 B2, US7114564B2|
|Inventors||Robert A. Parrott, David Mills, Cynthia L. Hickson, Jerry D. Campbell|
|Original Assignee||Schlumberger Technology Corporation|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (18), Non-Patent Citations (1), Referenced by (43), Classifications (24), Legal Events (4)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
This application is a continuation-in-part of U.S. application Ser. No. 10/133,755, filed Apr. 27, 2002, which claims the benefit of U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/286,907, filed Apr. 27, 2001, U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/306,938, filed Jul. 20, 2001, U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/307,086, filed Jul. 20, 2001, U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/307,087, filed Jul. 20, 2001, U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/310,970, filed Aug. 8, 2001, U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/314,200, filed Aug. 22, 2001, and U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/351,252 filed Jan. 23, 2002.
1. Field of Invention
The present invention relates to the field of perforating. More specifically, the invention relates to devices and methods to facilitate conveyance and orientation of perforating devices.
2. Background of the Invention
Formations penetrated by a downhole well, particularly horizontal or highly deviated wells, are studied to determine the most advantageous orientation of perforations. The desired orientation may be selected based on the possibility of sand production, based on the heavy overburden pressure and/or shear stress existing, or based on the location of control lines and/or other downhole equipment and tools.
There exists, therefore, a need for an apparatus and method for orienting perforating guns and for confirming that the correct orientation has been achieved.
The present invention provides an apparatus and method for facilitating conveyance and orienting perforating guns. In one embodiment, gun string components are eccentrically weighted to achieve a desired orientation of perforations. An adapter is provided to enable the gun string components to orient independent of the tool string.
It is to be noted, however, that the appended drawings illustrate only typical embodiments of this invention and are therefore not to be considered limiting of its scope, for the invention may admit to other equally effective embodiments.
Note that in alternate embodiments, the charge case 10 may be additionally mounted in such a way that the center of gravity is further removed from the axis of rotation
Providing a plurality of charges 10 modified in the manner described with reference to
The embodiment of
The features described with reference to
The guns 1 of the present invention may include some charges 10 that are modified and some that are not modified, or conventional. As one example, of many possible, the charges 10 of a gun 1 oriented in a first direction are eccentric and of the modified type (i.e., having a center of gravity that is offset from the axis of rotation), whereas those oriented in another direction are of the conventional type. In another embodiment, the charges 10 are used in a gun 1 to provide an oriented 0–180° phasing arrangement.
Another embodiment of the present invention, illustrated in
In the provided example, the weight 20 provided is a semi-circular weight. However, other configurations remain within the scope of the invention. Further, the weight 20 can be any number of types or configurations such as hollow flask type weights filled with a high density material, or half solid metal bars, for example.
In the case of slick-walled perforating guns, no further alignment is necessary as the gun carrier 14 has a uniform thickness around its circumference. Similarly, in the case of a perforating gun 1 having machined grooves extending circumferentially around the gun carrier 14 at each shaped charge interval, no further gun 1 alignment is necessary.
In the case of scalloped perforating guns 1, shown in
The embodiment illustrated in
It should be understood that the embodiment illustrated in
While the above example illustrates use of the orienting weight 32 to perforate in a horizontal plane, it should be understood that the orienting weight 32 can be configured to provide orientation in any desired plane.
Another embodiment of the invention, illustrated in
The spacer tube 42 contains a plurality of jigsaw puzzle-like cuts 44 spaced along its length. The cuts 18 traverse the circumference of the tube 42 in such a way as to cut the spacer tube 42 into separate segments 46 without enabling the segments 46 to be disengaged from each other. The cuts 44 allow the spacer tube 42 to bend a little at each cut 44 without causing the spacer tube 42 to lose its structural properties and primary function (i.e., orienting the gun string in the right direction). The segments 46 at each end of the spacer tube 42 are attached to alignment plates 48 that are used to lock the articulated weight spacer 40 to the gun carrier 14 or gun string.
Within each segment 46 is an appropriately shaped weight 50 (best illustrated in
As shown in
The articulated weight spacer 40 does not contain a directionally preferred stiffness in bending. It has the same stiffness, or resistance to bending, or bending moment of inertia, in all directions. Although it will still provide a gravitational correcting torque to the gun string when the gun string is not oriented in the desired direction, the articulated weight spacer 40 will not rotate the guns out of the intended gravitationally preferred direction when the spacer assembly is bent in a non-straight wellbore (i.e., when the bend is not in the 6 or 12 o'clock plane).
Thus, by fabricating the spacer tube 42 in this manner, the segments 46 remain stiff while the spacer tube 42 as a whole is able to bend with no resistance in any direction. The quantity and length of segments 46 and the width of the cuts 44 can be chosen to allow a suitable bending radius. In this manner, the gun can be passed through a bent wellbore without concern that the spacer tube 42 will try to incorrectly orient the gun string.
Each segment 74 may include a plurality of openings 78 for receipt of shaped charges (not shown). Tabs 80 may also be included in order to help secure the shaped charges in place. An opposing opening 82 may also be defined opposite each opening 78 for receipt of the back end of the corresponding shaped charge.
By fabricating the loading tube 70 in this manner, the individual segments 74 remain stiff while the loading tube 70 as a whole is able to bend with no resistance in any direction. The quantity and length of segments 74 and the width of the cuts 72 can be chosen to allow a suitable bending radius. In this manner, the gun can be passed through a bent wellbore without concern that the loading tube 70 will try to incorrectly orient the gun string.
Another embodiment of the present invention provides a method of compensating for non-uniformity of the bending moment in gun string components (i.e., gun carriers, gun spacers, and weighted housings). In this embodiment, a length of gun component raw material is bent in a curvature resembling that which may be experienced in a bent wellbore. While the material is bent, it is rotated about its longitudinal axis. The amount of torque required to accomplish the rotations is measured versus the angle of rotation between a reference “zero” and 360 degrees. Such measurement can be accomplished using a “bent torque response” assembly as illustrated in
By knowing in advance the wellbore trajectory, and knowing the “angle of bend,” gun carriers, gun spacers, and weighted spacer housings can be provided that will actively orient the gun string in the desired direction. The gun carriers, gun spacers, and weighted spacer housings that are known or planned to be located in a bent section can be manufactured to have the bent torque zero angle coincident with the angle of the bend of the bent wellbore.
The magnitude of the torque provided, or available, in the active orientation can be determined as well from the characterization of the raw material in the bent material torque response tests. The magnitude will vary depending on the individual piece of raw material, the degree of bend, and the length of the bent portion of the wellbore. The longer the bent portion of the wellbore, the greater the active orienting torque available. The higher the bend angle in the wellbore, the greater the active orienting torque available. Finally, the greater the amount of torque required to rotate a piece of raw material through one revolution, as identified in the bent material torque response tests, the greater the active orienting torque available.
Another embodiment of the present invention provides a positive alignment carrier that removes alignment error in subsequent gun strings that exists due to machining tolerances and clearances. In other words, the positive alignment carrier 90 illustrated in
Referring first to
The adapter 92 has a shoulder 108 having threads 110. Proximate the threads 110 are a plurality of set screw receptacles 112. The set screw receptacles 112 are located around the circumference of the adapter 92. The adapter surface 114 is further defined by a plurality of tapered keys 116 that protrude from the adapter surface 114. The tapered keys 116 have tapered sides 118. In the embodiment shown, the tapered keys 116 are rectangular in shape. However, in alternate embodiments, the tapered keys 116 can take on any number of regular or irregular shapes.
In operation, the shoulder ring 94 is first maneuvered along the adapter 92 toward the threaded shoulder 108. The shoulder ring 94 is able to pass by the tapered keys 116 by aligning the keyways 122 with the tapered keys 116. After passing the tapered keys 116, the shoulder ring is threaded onto the threads 116 of the shoulder 108. The spring ring 96 is then maneuvered onto the adapter and located in proximity of the shoulder ring 94.
After the spring ring 96 is placed on the adapter 92, the locking ring 98 is maneuvered onto the adapter 92 such that the key receptacles 132 engage the tapered keys 116. As stated above, there exists an interference between the tapered keys 116 and the key receptacles 132 such that the locking ring 98 must deform to fit over the adapter 92. Such deformation removes any clearance between the two.
Once the locking ring 98 is positioned over the tapered keys 116, the locking ring 98 is held in place by the shoulder ring 94 and spring ring 96. The shoulder ring 94 is backed off of the threads 116 of the adapter shoulder 108 until the spring ring 96 is acting on the locking ring 98 with the desired force. Once the desired force is attained, set screws are inserted through the notches 124 of shoulder ring 94 into the set screw receptacles 112 in the adapter. The set screws maintain the position of the shoulder ring 94, which in turn maintains the force supplied by the spring ring 96 on the locking ring 98. The spring ring 96 acts to hold the locking ring 98 in place, but also acts to absorb the forces generated by any axial displacement of the locking ring 98 toward the shoulder ring 94. Such axial displacement can occur during downhole operations.
In an alternate embodiment, the shoulder ring 94 is backed off of the threads 116 of the adapter shoulder 108 until the shoulder ring 94 is in abutment with the locking ring 98. Thus, the spring ring 96 is not needed. However, any axial displacement or axial forces acting on the locking ring 98 must be carried by the set screws and/or threads 110 of the shoulder ring 94.
Once the locking ring 98 is secured in place over the tapered keys 116, the mating component (gun carrier, spacer, adapter, etc.) can be attached. As shown in
The locking ring 98 is positively aligned and secured by both the interaction between the keyways 132 and the tapered keys 116 and the action of the shoulder ring 94. The mating component (gun carrier, spacer, adapter, etc.) is positively aligned and secured by engagement with the locking tabs 128 on the locking ring 98. Consequently, manufacturing tolerances are eliminated and the connection is positively aligned. Duplicating this type of connection throughout an entire string assembly results in a string assembly that does not have a gradual “drift” of alignment.
Another embodiment of the present invention provides a system and method of detecting control lines (acoustic, electrical, nuclear, thermal, magnetic, etc.) based on the detection of various materials contained therein. As illustrated in
It is important to note, that the system and method is equally applicable to dowhhole sensors, controls, downhole equipment and downhole tools that can be damaged or affected if in or near the path of a shaped charge jet. For ease of discussion, however, the invention will be discussed with reference to control lines.
In one embodiment of the system and method for detecting control lines 140 (and other components), the control line 140 is mapped and the gun 1 is indexed during the same trip in the hole. In this embodiment, focused detector(s) are used to determine the position of the control line 140, and a gyro is used in conjunction with the detector(s) to map the position of the control line 140 with respect to the low or high side of the casing 142. Once this is determined a gun string with an inclinometer/relative bearing tool (Wireline Perforating Inclinometer Tool) and gyro is run in the hole. This is used to verify that the inclinometer/relative bearing tool is in agreement with the gyro (required for wells with small inclinations). During the shooting pass the guns 1 and inclinometer/relative bearing tool are run (the gyro tool is removed) with the gun 1 positioned in the desired shooting direction. The inclinometer/relative bearing tool is used to confirm that the gun 1 is positioned in the desired direction and the guns 1 are fired. The guns 1 can be oriented by any of the above mentioned methods, Further, the guns can be positioned by conventional passive means (Wireline Oriented Perforating Tool, Weighted Spring Positioning Device) or active means (downhole motor-Wireline Perforating Platform).
The focused detector(s) are selected based upon what the control lines 140 (or other components) are made of or contain within. In one embodiment, the method and system uses radioactive detection. In this embodiment, a gamma ray imaging tool is used to detect the control line 140 or any component in the control line 140 that is doped with radioactive tracer elements (cobalt 60, cesium, etc.). Likewise, the gamma ray imaging tool can be used to detect a radioactive pip tag placed in the brackets that fasten the control line 140 to the casing/tubing. The gamma ray imaging tool can also be used to detect radioactive fluid injected into the control line 140.
In another embodiment of the system and method of detecting control lines 140, the detector(s) are used for acoustic detection. Ultrasonic imaging tools can be used if the control line 140 has a significant difference in acoustic impedance from the surrounding media (cement, mud cake, formation, gravel pack, etc.).
In yet another embodiment of the system and method of detecting control lines 140, the focused detector(s) are used for thermal detection. In this embodiment, thermal detection tools (Production Services Platform, Manometer Temperature Sonde) can be used to detect cooling fluid that is pumped down the control line 140.
Still another embodiment of the system and method of detecting control lines 140 utilizes electrical detection. In this embodiment, the control line 140 is detected where the coupling of an induced EMF signal on the control line side of the casing 142 differs from the opposite side. Alternately smart card type transducers, or other electronic tags, can be oriented in the casing 142 or control line 140 and detected.
Another embodiment of the system and method of detecting control lines 140 uses magnetic detection. A Magnetometer can be used when a magnetic tag is placed in the control line 140, control line brackets or the casing 142.
Another embodiment of the present invention, illustrated schematically in
The roller adapter 150 is described in more detail with reference to
The roller adapter 150 provides a plurality of roller wheels 152 housed within a roller cage 154. The roller wheels 152 are aligned along the longitudinal axis of the roller adapter 150 and are spaced around the circumference of the roller cage 154. It should be noted that any number of roller wheels 152 can be provided with any number of circumferential configurations. It should also be noted that the wheels 152 can be replaced with similar rotational devices, such as ball bearings, rollers, or balls, and remain within the scope of the invention.
As mentioned above, the roller wheels 152 reduce the friction of the gun string 14 during conveyance. The roller wheels 152 eliminate the necessity of overcoming the sliding friction experienced by the gun string 14 as it is positioned within the wellbore 22. This reduction in friction is particularly advantageous in extended reach wells or when the gun string 14 is being conveyed with coiled tubing.
The roller cage 154 that houses the roller wheels 152 is mounted between two bearing race assemblies 156. The axial position of the bearing race assemblies 156, and thus the roller cage 154, is maintained by cage retainers 160. The bearing race assemblies 156 each contain rollers 158 that enable the roller cage 154 to spin with very little friction. In one embodiment, the rollers 158 each contain two sizes of ball bearings. The ability of the cage 154 to spin freely ensures that the rollers 158 do not act to rotate the gun string during conveyance into the wellbore. Such unwanted rotation could introduce gun string orientation errors.
The roller adapter 150 is connected intermediate the tool string 24 and the gun string 14 by adapters 162, 164 located at opposite ends of the roller adapter 150. The adapters 162, 164 can take on any number of embodiments depending upon the mating ends of the components to be connected.
Another embodiment of the present invention provides a bearing isolation device adapted to increase the load carrying capacity of swivels utilized by the gun string. Swivels are used in the gun string to enable the perforating guns to rotate independent of the tool string to achieve the desired orientation. Referring back to
The bearing isolation device utilized by the swivel is generally comprised of a thrust bearing 176, a bearing floater 178 and a split ring 180, all housed within a collar 182. The thrust bearing 176 is a roller type bearing that, in general, is relatively limited with respect to its maximum load. At high loads, such as those experienced during deployment of a long and heavy gun string, the rollers and washers of the thrust bearing 176 can become damaged. Such damage can result in an increase of the torque required to rotate the shaft 174.
The bearing floater 178 is provided to prevent such damage to the rollers and washers of the thrust bearing 176. The bearing floater 178 is a spring device that allows for predetermined deflection for a known compressive load. One embodiment of the bearing floater 178 is shown in
Referring back to
Another embodiment of the present invention provides an apparatus and method of confirming that a correct orientation of the perforating gun 1 has been achieved. As shown in
The confirmation device 200 provides a trigger charge (small shaped charge) 202 that is initiated by the same detonating cord 16 that initiates the main shaped charges 10. Upon detonation, the trigger charge 202 shoots into a proof plate 204 to provide evidence of the gun 1 orientation at the time of firing. The evidence is provided without piercing the gun carrier 14 and risking damage to the wellbore or wellbore components.
In the illustrated embodiment, the proof plate 204 is a semi-circular plate housed within a highly polished track 206. The proof plate 204 has one or more wheels 204 a that enable the plate 204 to rotate, within the track 206, around the center axis of the gun 1. Due to its own weight, the proof plate 204 will always be on the bottom side of the well. The trigger charge 202 is positioned to shoot straight down relative to the correct orientation of the loading tube 12 and main charges 10 (whether at 0, 90, 180, or any other deviated angle) when properly oriented. Thus, if the orientation of the loading tube 12 is correct, the trigger charge 202 will always shoot straight through the center of the proof plate 204. If the charges 10 are not correctly oriented, the degree of misalignment can be measured by the shot fired into the proof plate 204.
It should be noted that in alternate embodiments, the proof plate 204 can be manufactured to extend completely around the trigger charge 202 and still be ordinated by gravity to record slight and large deviations.
In another embodiment of the confirmation device 200, illustrated in
The detonating cord 16 is provided in operable attachment to the trigger charge 202 such that detonation of the detonating cord causes the trigger charge 202 to fire. Upon detonation, the trigger charge 202 fires creating an indication on the loading tube 12 that can be inspected to determine the orientation of the perforations. Once again, the orientation is confirmed without the necessity of penetrating the gun carrier 14 with the trigger charge 202.
Another embodiment of confirming that a correct orientation of the perforating gun 1 has been achieved is illustrated in
The confirmation device 200 has an upper alignment plate 212 and a lower alignment plate 214 rigidly affixed within an external housing 216. The upper alignment plate 212 and the lower alignment plate 214 each provide a centralized guide 212 a, 214 a, for receipt of a central shaft 218. The guides 212 a, 214 a allow the central shaft 218 to rotate freely at both ends. Fixedly attached to the central shaft 218 is a counter weight 210 that is always positioned in the lower portion of the confirmation device 200 due to the force of gravity.
The detonating cord 16 passes through the central shaft 218. Upon detonation of the detonating cord 16 to fire the shaped charges (not shown), the pressure inside the central shaft 218 rises quickly causing the central shaft 218 to expand and lock itself inside the upper and lower guides 212 a, 214 a. Thus, the central shaft 218 is locked in the position it was in upon firing of the shaped charges. Upon retrieval of the gun string, the position of the central shaft 218 within the confirming device 200 can be examined to determine the orientation of the gun string at the time of detonation.
It should be noted that it is only necessary that the central shaft 218 expand to lock with one of the guides 212 a, 214 a. For example, the lower guide 212 a may be made of plastic and only used for guiding purposes rather than locking purposes. It should further be noted that the guides 212 a, 214 a can include uneven surfaces that mechanically lock the central shaft 218 so as to not rely on friction alone to maintain the locked position.
Yet another embodiment of the confirmation device 200 is illustrated in
Upon detonation of the detonating cord, the pressure rises rapidly within the drill hole 224 causing the spear 221 to be driven upward. The hardened spear 221 strikes and indents the inside surface of the external housing 216 at the time of detonation. After the perforating job is completed, the external housing 216 is removed and examined to determine the actual orientation of the perforations in the wellbore.
Another embodiment of the confirmation device 200 is illustrated in
A spear mechanism 234 provides a tube 236, two bearings 238, a hub 240, a barrel 242, and a spear 244. The tube 236 is positioned within the central openings 246 defined through the disks 226. The bearings 238 are mounted on the tube 236 on either side of the hub 240, with the tube 236 also passing through the central opening 248 in the hub 240. The bearings 238 enable rotation of the hub 240. The barrel 242 extends from the hub 240 and is in communication with the central opening 248. The spear 244 is located within the barrel 242 and may be initially held in place by a shear pin 250. The spear mechanism 234 is weighted, such as by the inclusion of the barrel 242 and spear 244, such that the barrel 242 and spear 244 are oriented, by gravity, on the lower side of the gun string.
The detonating cord 16 (shown in dashed lines) passes through the central openings 246 in the disks 226 and through the interior of the tube 236. Upon detonation of the detonating cord 16, the tube 236 is disintegrated and the pin 250 is sheared, causing the spear 244 to be driven downward and indent the inside surface of the sleeve 230. After the perforating job, the location of the indentation can be used to determine the actual orientation of the perforations.
Still another embodiment of the confirmation device 200 is illustrated in
Upon detonation of the detonating cord 16, the pressure increase within the housing 254 causes the ball bearing 252 to create an indentation in the inner wall 256 of the housing 254. The bearing housing 254 is fixed in relation to the shaped charges such that the indentation is used to verify orientation of the perforations at the time of detonation.
In alternate embodiments, the housing 254 contains multiple ball bearings 252. Further, it should be noted that by using a housing 254 having a rounded shape in the axial direction, the orientation of the gun string may be determined in multiple axes. In other words, the ball(s) 252 rotate to the low side of the housing 254 enabling determination of the longitudinal angle of the guns as well as the rotational orientation.
Yet another embodiment of the confirmation device 200 is illustrated in
Upon detonation of the detonating cord 16, the alignment tube 268 creates shrapnel that passes through the one or more radial passageways 266 in the bearing support 262 and impinges the inner bearing surface of the eccentric weight 260. By knowing the orientation of the one or more radial passageways 266 with respect to the orientation of the shaped charges, the orientation of the perforations may be determined by inspection of the eccentric weight 260.
In an alternate embodiment of that illustrated in
It should be noted that the confirmation devices 200 can be used at both ends of a fixed string of guns. In this manner, the orientation at both ends of the gun string can be confirmed. It should be further noted that the above embodiments of the confirming device 200 are illustrative and not intended to limit the scope of the present invention. The described features can be combined and modified and remain within the scope of the present invention. As one example, the hardened spear 221 of
While the foregoing is directed to the preferred embodiment of the present invention, other and further embodiments of the invention may be devised without departing from the basic scope thereof, and the scope thereof is determined by the claims that follow. It is the express intention of the applicant not to invoke 35 U.S.C. § 112, paragraph 6 for any limitations of any of the claims herein, except for those in which the claim expressly uses the word “means” together with an associated function.
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|U.S. Classification||166/255.2, 175/4.6, 175/4.51, 166/297, 166/55|
|International Classification||E21B43/1185, E21B43/117, E21B17/10, E21B43/119, E21B47/024, E21B17/05, E21B43/00|
|Cooperative Classification||E21B47/024, E21B17/1057, E21B43/119, E21B43/1185, E21B43/117, E21B17/05|
|European Classification||E21B17/10R, E21B43/1185, E21B43/119, E21B43/117, E21B47/024, E21B17/05|
|May 30, 2003||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: SCHLUMBERGER TECHNOLOGY CORPORATION, TEXAS
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:PARROTT, ROBERT A.;MILLS, DAVE;REEL/FRAME:013696/0375;SIGNING DATES FROM 20030507 TO 20030508
|Jun 28, 2006||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: SCHLUMBERGER TECHNOLOGY CORPORATION, TEXAS
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:HICKSON, CYNTHIA L.;CAMPBELL, JERRY D.;REEL/FRAME:017855/0376
Effective date: 20060607
|Mar 18, 2010||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 4
|Mar 5, 2014||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 8